As a general rule I think self-congratulatory blog posts masquerading as ‘thank you dear readers, I do it all for you’ type nonsense tends towards the rather naff. Which is why I very seldom do such things. But one little indulgence can’t hurt, can it?
It should come as little surprise that April tends to be a big month on in-the-back-of-the.net – it’s when NRFL starts after all, and despite it not really being the intention when I started out, the Northern League has turned out to be my blogging bread and butter.
Last April, the blog attracted 18,746 page views according to WordPress stats – almost four and a half thousand more than the second best month ever which was the previous March. When it comes to the most important metric to me, unique visits as measured by StatCounter (the stat that Open Parachute uses to rank New Zealand blogs), April last year held the record at 6,072 – until now.
Knowing that this month always had the potential to be quite big, I wanted to set some goals. I thought it would be nice to break 20,000 page views for the first time and make 7,000 unique visits.
As of right now, with two hours to go in the month, we are up to 24,467 page views and 7,341 unique visits.
I am exceptionally happy with this (hence the naff post) but of course I can’t claim full credit. There have been an unprecedented number of interesting and popular guest posts this month by folks of such high calibre as (in the order they posted!) Andrew Dewhurst, Helen Kelly, John Palethorpe, Rod de Lisle, and Jason Heather in addition to a post from regular contributor Niall Anderson (possibly his last given he’s just landed a job at Granny Herald – congrats Niall!!).
When you write about a football club, you get a sense for how much they support what you do by the social media shares they give you, leading to more hits. This month I wrote about Waitakere City (twice), Melville, Takapuna, Ngaruawahia, Auckland City FC, Hawkes Bay United, Western Springs, Claudelands Rovers (twice), Manukau City, AFC Fury, Ellerslie, Tauranga City United, Three Kings United, South Auckland Rangers, Internationale, Papakura City, Pukekohe and Hamilton Wanderers!
Obviously it doesn’t take a genius to work out that the more posts you publish, the more hits you get, and this month also carries the highest post count ever for the blog at 17. Hard work pays off!
I do need to pace myself a bit though. Going to more than one game per weekend is unsustainable long term so rather than flame out I will pull back slightly in the next few weeks. May will start with a very exciting trip to Wellington for an A-League semi-final that I am looking forward to immensely, but until then, thank you dear readers! I do it all for you!!
Not really… But thanks anyway.
A grassroots sports photography enthusiast based in Auckland, New Zealand, and a fan of the most magnificent football club on earth - A.S. Roma.